2019 was a wonderful year for film, and with the new year, and the new decade, there is an entirely new slate of films to be released. Below are my 10 most anticipated of 2020.
Honorable Mention: The Way Back
- Honestly, I just want to see if this film is real. The trailer released absolutely out of nowhere and was about Ben Affleck… as a basketball coach, and looked… good? Yea, this film looked kind of good. I don’t know if it was the song or the feel of the movie, but I am really intrigued to see if this is real and good.
Honorable Mention: New Mutants
- Like the movie before, I don’t only want to see if this is real, I want to see if this will actually get released. This film has been in the depths of production hell for years, so I am interested in how they take on the difference in look from age and growing up of these characters. The first trailer looked good, and honestly, the second trailer looked creepy as well. If this movie flops, it might be the biggest disappointment of the year, but in the same vein, it’s kind of expected.
- Absolute star Jennifer Hudson is playing an absolute star in Aretha Franklin in a biopic about her life. Liesl Tommy is making her filmmaking debut, but with such a star as Jennifer Hudson in the lead role, along with veterans Forrest Whittaker, Marlon Wayans, and Mary J. Blidge, I have full faith in this film. Go ahead and give Hudson that second Oscar.
9. Ghostbusters Afterlife
- Jason Reitman takes over the Ghostbusters series from his father in what seems to be a smaller scale, almost indie style, take on Ghostbusters. I absolutely loved the first trailer, and the cast with Paul Rudd and Finn Wolfhard seem absolutely perfect.
8. I’m Thinking of Ending Things
- Charlie Kaufman is directing a film pegged as a terrifying journey through a couple’s psyche. Whew. It seems like a lot, and I am excited for anything that Kaufman’s mind can produce. I am upset that Brie Larson had to step away from this, but the cast is still stellar with Jesse Plemmons, Toni Collette, and Jessie Buckley in her first role post her breakout in Wild Rose.
7. Da 5 Bloods
- Spike Lee’s follow up to his incredible successful BlacKkKlansman follows the story of 4 black Veterans as they travel back to Vietnam in search of their squad leader and… buried treasure?! Starring Chadwick Boseman and 2019 stand-outs Paul Walter Hauser and Jonathan Majors, this film seems just crazy enough to really work. Especially with Spike Lee directing, and a Netflix release.
- One of two Pixar films being released this year, and they both look fantastic. I give the edge to Soul just for how incredible the animation and story actually look. Some of these scenes looked like a live-action shot of New York. It seems to be following the same path of hitting a difficult subject, likely death, in a way for everyone to understand. Jamie Foxx is in the lead voice role and it seems like he will be singing as well. This is going to be a good year for original animation after a year of remakes and reboots last year.
5. The French Dispatch
- Wes Anderson is back! And, he brings in a cast of Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Frances McDormand, Owen Wilson, Willem Dafoe, Saoirse Ronan, Jeffrey Wright, Henry Winkler, Timothee Chalamet, and so many more. A love letter to journalism and journalist set in Post-war Paris is what this film is being pegged as, and I could not be more excited. Wes Anderson is one of the most ambitious visionaries today, and I am excited about his first live-action film since the incredible Grand Budapest Hotel.
- I am an AVID Scooby-Doo fan, and this trailer and style of animation and just movie overall look so fun and charming. It is exactly what I want from an animated Scooby-Doo film, that looks to be doing something different as well. The voice cast is perfect for this, and the trailer only raised my hype.
3. Last Night in Soho
- Edgar Wright directing a film starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin McKenzie, and a bunch of people I have never heard of. Somehow, that makes me even more excited for this movie. I love Edgar Wright, and I am excited to see how he takes on 1960s fashion industry in London.
- The director of the 2010s, Dennis Villeneuve, is back already as he adapts one of the best science fiction novels… ever. We know how good he is in science fiction films, Arrival and Blade Runner 2049, so this should be right up his alley. The cast behind it is incredible as well with Timothee Chalamet, Zendaya, Jason Mamoa, Oscar Isaac, Rebecca Ferguson, Josh Brolin, Javier Bardem, and so much more. I am interested to see if Villeneuve can pull this off and if he has maybe one too many stars as well.
1. Trial of Chicago 7
- Aaron Sorkin writing and directing a film about the uprising of the Democratic National Convention of 1968. Not to mention this cast is absolutely perfect with Sacha Baron Coen, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Michael Keaton, Thomas Middleditch, and so much more. This cast and crew all around could get me hyped for really anything, and then when the subject of this film surrounds something I have personally covered a bunch in school and on my own, this one is easily my most anticipated film of the year, no questions asked. Sacha Baron Cohen will get an Oscar Nomination for playing Abbie Hoffman, I am saying this now.
Jacob is a film critic and co-founder of the Music City Drive-In. He is a member of the Music City Film Critics’ Association and specializes in the awards season. You can find him on Twitter @Tberry57.